On 14 December 1963, a small crack developed in the reservoir wall. The surrounding portion of the wall was quickly eroded straight through, releasing 250 million gallons (1 million m3) into the surrounding neighborhood in a few hours. In the process, 277 homes were destroyed and 5 lives were lost. Frantic rescue efforts avoided a more significant loss of life. The reservoir failure was attributed to subsidence caused by over-exploitation of the nearby Inglewood Oil Field.
The reservoir is now part of Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area.
#4 on map below is the location of the break.
"Janice's Green Valley" is the filled in reservoir (below).
"Firemen Save 18 Lives in Baldwin Hills Flood". The Fireman's Grapevine. February 1964. Meehan, RL; Hamilton, DH (23 April 1971).
"Ground Rupture in the Baldwin Hills". Science 172 (3981): 333–344. doi:10.1126/science.172.3981.333. PMID 17756033.
Richard Cowen (11 February 2002). "CHAPTER XX: Man-made Subsidence". University of California, Davis.